It’s been speculated for a long time, but Marvel has been keeping a close eye on the court case involving actor Jonthan Majors (Creed III). The actor, who had been playing various versions of ‘Kang’ and ‘He Who Remains’ (in Ant-man & the Wasp: Quantumania and in Disney+ series Loki) was set to be the big multiverse-spanning conqueror who would be the growing threat and villain for the upcoming Avengers movies: 2026’s Avengers: The Kang Dynasty and 2027’s Avengers: Secret Wars.
Marvel had significantly invested in the character and actor, but in March 2023 Majors was arrested and faced domestic abuse charges, accused of battering and abusing his ex-girlfriend, Grace Jabbari. Jabbari claimed she was assaulted by Majors in the backseat of a car, saying that Majors fractured her finger after she snatched his phone when it appeared to hold messages from another woman. The altercation spilled out into the street and police were called. The trial finished late last week and the jury had been deliberating their verdict. Pundits were divided on what they thought would happen – as neither Majors and Jabbari were ideal figures without controversy and contradictions in their testimonies and reputations.
The verdict came Monday with the jury – considering four charges – deciding that Majors not guilty of intentional assault in the third degree and of aggravated harassment in second degree, but guilty of reckless assault and harassment. He had already been dropped by his management, 360 Entertainment (though WME continues to represent Major) and his upcoming film Magazine Dreams (which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and had been talked of in terms of Oscar contention) was pulled prior to planned release. Today’s decision was finally enough for Marvel to formally cut their losses and make a final decision, confirming to several news sources that Majors had been formally fired from the key role.
This latest development comes after The Kang Dynasty also parted ways with its originally-planned director Shang Chi‘s Destin Daniel Cretton due to conflicts in timing. It is not clear at this point whether the role of Kang will be recast or whether Marvel will pivot to another villain, perhaps the arrival of Doctor Doom (which would factor in to the Fantastic Four film and the original ‘villain’ of the Secret Wars comics storyline on which part of the Avengers movies will be based).
Majors’ sentencing, which could involve up to a year in prison, will be formalised in early February. Majors lawyer said he would appeal the verdict.